Sunday, November 07, 2010


WHAT IF ... Lobbying Was Transparent

By Henry Curtis

Years ago a lobbyist walked into an office of a Hawai`i State Legislator and stated that his company was looking for a lobbyist. The Legislator said what about my chief of staff. The chief of staff became the lobbyist.

A lobbyist can fund a pet cause of a Legislator, give gifts to family members, provide friendly questioners at public events or provide bodies to sign wave.

Lobbyists are sort of like tax accountants. There is always a way around every lobbying law.

What if ... ever way of lobbying were legal

But one had to disclose the lobbying campaign and identify all of the funds and techniques used.

What if ... the was an enormous penalty for failure to disclose

How does transparency (disclosure) compare to public funding of candidates. Which is more effective? Which is cheaper to implement?

Henry Curtis

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